Developmental coalitions in Botswana

Finding out what really works in developmental leadership has been at the heart of DLP's research from the start. This investigation into Botswana's many post-independence successes was the first study of its kind, analysing the inner political story of its leaders, elites and coalitions. The study looked beyond the obvious to examine how they had worked in formal and informal settings, in political, economic and social settings, and in inter-ethnic and inter-racial groups.

The study isolates specific 'moments of coalition' that show the importance of leaders and elites in decision-making. The strategies used by Botswana’s leaders held them together as functioning coalitions which were able to reproduce themselves, a rare phenomenon in African state-building. The study also pinpoints the local factors and institutional features of Botswanan society and politics that influenced the interactions of its leaders and elites, making it possible for them to form cross-cutting coalitions.

Researchers: David Sebudubudu (University of Botswana) and Patrick Molutsi

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The Developmental Leadership Program (DLP) is an international research initiative that explores how leadership, power and political processes drive or block successful development.

DLP focuses on the crucial role of home-grown leaderships and coalitions in forging legitimate political settlements and institutions that promote developmental outcomes, such as sustainable growth, political stability and inclusive social development.

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